Depressed Warrnamboool thief fined $500

A WARRNAMBOOL man who claimed to suffer profound episodes of depression has been fined $500 after attempting to steal groceries by ducking under a security barrier.

Paul Ludlow, 42, of Ocean Grove, pleaded guilty in Warrnambool Magistrates Court to theft. A charge of failing to answer bail was proven and dismissed.

Police said Ludlow went to the Centro supermarket on October 18 last year, selected various items valued at $108.37 and then crawled under a security barrier before walking out of the store.

Another customer alerted staff and Ludlow was stopped by employees until police arrived.

Ludlow, who had prior convictions for theft, had been bailed to appear in court on January 22 but said he became confused about what date he had to attend court.

Magistrate Michael Coghlan said Ludlow had to realise that if he kept pinching things he would end up in jail. “You can’t stop everyone from stealing. I would be surprised if you got caught every time you did this,” he said.

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